DEVOTED ENTIRELY TO THE INTERESTS OF JEFFERSON COUNTY
Jefferson town, Jefferson County, Ky., Thursday, April 18, !912.
Vol. 5. No. 43
Every Thursday at $1.00 Per Year
The Oldest Christian Minister at His 95th Birthday
Rev. Win. Tharp, of
M DDL E TOWN CHRISTIAN CHURCH
The original building is shown at the rear of the new front new under construction.
REV. WILLIAM THARP.
)liost Christian Minister in the World.
Above Illustrations Used By
was of a peculiar nature-- .
Near the close of a benign oem is wit li his a rri va in the former capital
a stanza oien appropriated in a of the county and continued at inpersonal Sense by the devout and tervals until about 189 or 1892. Upon
who in the lapse occasion, when he felt called to evanspiritual!
years have learned the futility of gelistic work, another minister was
creed and dogma, however engaged and he was free to go and
Chas. T. Moore.
seemingly based on what has been come as he was needed, resuming the
conceived as. or confounded with, Middletown pastorate again when
the conditions that called him away
t terual trut h:
had been fulfilled. His relationship
"And so beside Ihe sileni .
to the church now might be termed
wait t lie ill tutted oar;
No harm can come from Him tome
On ocean or on shore."
Too often it is the gentle melancholy that is apt to be emphasized in
the attitude of the acceptor, or again
the resultant is a curious exaltation
that arouses in the worldly observer
less mature a doubt as to its legitimacy. Now and then, as in Ihe case
of the Rev. William Tharp, where
and ten is
the spaa of three-scorbv almost its third, the
happier meaning that informed the
Friends writer's lines is found.
The Rev. Mr. Tharp is the oldest
living minister of t he ( tourcfa of the
Dictates of Christ, or Che Christian
Church. For the last fifty-five
he has made his home in Middletown,
fourteen miles east of Louisville, on
the Shelby ville pike and the Louis-
ville and nterurban railroad. Next
Tuesday he will celebrate his niuety-Ift-
Although in almost perfect preservation of all his faculties, because ol
a slight cold from which he has been
suffering the celebration will be a
quiet one, and only the immediate
memtersof his family
had been discussed for a grand
observance of the anniversary by the
members of the M Iddietown Christian
church, of which he formerly was
pastor, but under the circumst ances
which have arisen it is feared that
the excitement of such an occasion
might have an untoward effect
By No Means
means to he
the Rev. Mr. Thar), is
an invalid. Far from it . Indeed, bis
general appearance s thai of better
physical condition than most persons
who have reached the allotted seven.
He walks about the
ami grounds of his son. John
Tharp, at Middletown, when and
where he pieases and without a cane.
He eats what he likes and with a
good appetite. While he has had a
Dumber of severe illnesses, he never
hah suffered from any of the defined
diseases, such as typhoid fever.pneu-moniaorthlike. He has been constitutionally subject to cold, and
most of his sickness has resulted
from this cause.
Something of his health and mentality may be judged from the fact
that within the last year he has
preached a sermon in the Middletown
Christian church. His strength was
not sufficient to permit him to stand
during the entire length of his discourse and he sat in a chair while
preaching. Those who heard the
sermon aver. that it was much superior to the efforts of many younger
men, and they hope, with him, that
he will be able to fill the pulpit again
with the coming of thesofter weather.
It is twenty years since the Rev.
Mr. Tharp retired from the active
ministry. But during much of .the
time after that until recent years he
engaged in evangelistic and supply
From this it
is by no
His pastorate at Middletown
MRS. HIRAM W( KI,
Oldest Member oi Original Middle town Congregation
Courtesy of Louisville Times.
Planted Many Chiirrhes.
time "the town wasn't worth a cent
to live in," hut that since the saloons
have been driven out ifhas developed
into an ideal home community.
Mis. Tharp died in ls.V. and two
years later, shortly before settling
he married Miss
Martha Cox. of Shelby county, who
died seventeen years ago. The oldest son of this marriage, Wallace
Tharp, is pastor of the first Christian
church of Fittsburg, Fa. William
Tharp, Jr., is pastor of the Bcargrass
Christian church and lives at Middle-town- ,
as does John Tharp, the youngest son, with whom the aged minister
makes his home.
In the sixty six years at which he
reckons his continuous service. Mr.
Tharp established many churches of
the Christian denomination in KenSpeaking of Marriages.
tucky and Indiana. The greater part
The number of marriages which Mr.
of his early work, by far, was along
Tharp has performed, of which unevangelist ie lines aud he traveled
no record, he
would run well into the
He was born within si milesof
in Henry county, Ky.. April thousands. The third couple whose
vows he heard are living at Newcas-- t
9, 1SI7. and began preaching at the
age of 23 years, it was about this le, where the ceremony was performand are now
time also that he married Miss Biiza ed,
Two other marriages he mentioned,
B a t Is. of Henry county, and one son,
Christopher Tharp, of this marriage because they took place on the same
day, were those of Frof. and Mrs. W.
is now a farmer near Middletown.
H. Bartholomew and the Rev. and
His interest in religion was aroused Mrs. George W. Taylor, di Louisville.
when his mother embraced the tenets These were solemnized March 20, 1862
of the Christian church under the and both couples celebrated
preaching ot Hart on Stone who, with golden wedding anniversaries last
Walter Scotr, were doing In the West mouth, rjrgeht invitations to the
the work begun bf Alexander Camp- festivities were received by the Key.
bell in the Fast. It was when he was Mr. Tharp. but he thought it unwise
years old that Mr.
about twenty-fou- r
for him to risk the exposure.
Tharp first met Alexander Campbell
This as naturally brought up the
at New Castle and heard him preach.
mortality of man. All of the friends
This acquaintance ripened into a and associates of Mr. Tharp's boywarm friendship which extended over hood and young manhood long ago
many years and was terminated only have passed to
the Beyond. Only two
by the death of tlieelderman in 1866.
members of his original congregation
While M r. Tharp was active in the at Middletown are now living. These
founding of many of the schools and are Mrs. iliran Wood and M rs. A lien
Colleges maintained bv the Christ ian Potter. Mrs. Wood is eighty-fiv- e
Church, bis own education was only old and Mrs. Folter is sevent
the rudiments furnished by the The Rey. Mr. Tharp had charge of
county schools of his boyhood and the funeral services of nearly all of
such as he was afterward able to the other fifty or sixty members of
acquire ty close personal application. ihe church-ahe found it when he
It is probable thai this, to a great came to M iddietown.
extent, is responsible for hisint imate
His way of talking
acquaintance with the text of the Is a beautiful lesson of simple
Bible. This is so minute, his friends
may oj en the Hook at and trust. He accepts them as a
say. that one
matter ot course, and there is about
random and begin reading to him
him an atmosphere of hope and anand he will instantly name the book ticipation
as he speaks of t hem quite
and chapter and if a lapsus lingua different
from the protestations
occurs will s t ihe reader right from
sometimes found among the deeply
religious who declare their yearnings
for the hereafter. This is the better
Nothirg of a Politician.
contrasted by his acute interest in
A bsorbed in the study ol" theological
the things about him and the world
problems at the age when most of
young men are apt to be attracted
bv politics, the Rev. Mr. Tharp gave
Keeps Abreast of The Times.
but slight attention to civil governHe reads the daily papers and
He recalls that his first vote
was cast lor Henrv Clay, but. since i keeps a close watch on the religious
CUm lime, iicucyci hiwoi wtiuun journals, especially those published
with anv party. When he has voted by his sect. Several evenings each
at all (being often prevented from week his son. the Rev.- William
exercising the suffrage by change of Tharp. Jr., who also lives in Middle-towcomes in and with other friends
residence) he has based his choice on
the known character of the candidate they discuss the current trend of reandthe issues for which thecandidate ligions thought andthe general news
of the day. He is, in spite of his
approach to participa- comparative isolation, aware of the
tion in a political campaign of any persopal services drift of modern
He thoroughly apkind was eighteen yeais ago, when Protestantism.
proves oi the Salvation Army, and
with Dr. Folk, of Cedardale, M'dille-towhe joined in a crusade against though less familiar with the Men
the three saloons there. At their own and Religion Forward Movement,
expense Mr. Tharp and Dr. Foik pro- believes that it is an excellent work.
cured an election at which the saloons For many years before his retirewere voted out of existence and since ment he labored incessantly with
have not been permitted to return. those of his brethren who have been
Mr. Tharp declares that prior to tha trying to bring the denominational
churches into accord under one
scheme of organization and declaration of pi inciples.
If: was along- this line of thought-mod- ern
progress in diverse directions
that he mentioned, in an impersonal way, that all of the great inventions have given such impetus to
civilization aud advanced standards
of living. He talks interestingly of
the appearance of the first steamboat on the Ohio river and the
controversy over the application of steam to navigation.
He tells an equally interesting tale
of the first railroad of ihe West,
from Madison to Indianapolis and his
first: ride '"on the cars."
He remembers the discovery of
anesthetics and the invention of the
telegraph. The telephone, the trolley car, the electric light andthe
myriad applications of electric t ower and phenomena are to him receet
ami infantile. He has a phonograph
and his favorite record is Williams
Jennings Bryan's stately and power
ful discourse on "The Resurrection,"
which he tegards as one of the masterpieces of oratory audsermonoiogy
of all time.
Ideas of Heaven and Hell.
With ail of his long experience
and his close attention to the various tendencies of thought among
theologians and students, the Rev.
Mr. Tharp's ideas as to the future
state ol man, contrast somewhat,
strangely with declarations made
from time to time by his brethren of
the cloth and approach, perhaps,
more nearly to the modern lay tendency. He declared that any attempts to describe the fat e either of
the wicked or the righteous must be
Of these things he is confident,
with a confident e that is comforting
to behold. That the wicked are certain of punishment for their. sins.
He Bays he does not. concern himself whether this will be utter anni
hilation: "'adequate punishment,' involving the idea of purgatory and
subsequent salvation, or eternal punishment in literal hell fire. He is Of
State Should Unite For Better
equally certain that the righteous
will he rewarded, though he make,
Service Will Meet
no attempt to formulate the prize
except to say that it will be a better,
larger and richer life, and life eternal, than the mind of mau is able to
If you should dip up Lake Erie in
a tin cup. pint at a time, and pour it
Out ot his many years he says that on
the big turbine wheels in the
his message to young men aud to wheel-pitat Niagara Falls, you
young women is still, Seek ye first
Could hardly get. them damp.
Uie kingdom ot. Cod and His rig h
let a great body of water tumble
and all things snail be auu-ei- l
through the tunnels, and the wheels
unto you. "Louisville Times.
are driven to generate energv sufficient for running all the machinery
within two hundred miles of the falls-Thwater has might only when it
April 15- .- Miss Estelle Hess, o: falls in large volumes.
Louisville, is spending some time
This principle holds as good in powith bei sister, Mis. IJouti Maddux.
litical ami social science as in phyMiss Muuel Maddux was the' guesi
The sum of tiie forces of a
oi Mmstieorgiapnine loungin Lou sics
e.v llle last Week.
number of unit-- , is greater the closer
in, Frather had ashergues;
the aggregation of units.
lor the week-enThe irresistable rushes of Napoher sister,
Mamie tjimcoe, ot South Louisville. leon and Oku: the successful work of
Mrs. Samuel Garwood, who has parties and sects: the powerful in
been very sick for some time, is im- fluence of organized public opinion
in any great
matter all these,
Mrs. A..C. Potts and Miss M.i
though widely differing, are based
Belcher closed then school here Friday. We wish lor them ami their upon the principle illustrated aboye.
To make intellectual or moral forces
pupils a very trappy vacation.
t hey must be made to
Mr. Wm. Wehb, of Pry's Hill
Friday after several months act in thrniie direction at the
stay in Florado.
Mr. and Mrs. Bertha Garwood and
Each teacher in Kentucky is a unit
daughter have moveu into their neu of force. Evervone ot the ten thouscottage.
and teachers of Kentucky is doing a
Mr. and Mrs. W. F. Bnisch were
guests Sunday of Mrs. R. L. Millet faithful, earnest, and in most cases,
efficient work, tint how vastly more
Mr. ami Mrs. Fred Garwood spent efficient work ould lie done by these
Friday in Louisville.
units of teaching force acting toM iss Georgia M iller is the guest ol
gether by aggregating. Tk Kenfriends at. Glenview
tucky Educational Association is
W isli to thank the editor'for the sounding a clarion call to all teachcompliment oil our worthy black. ers in Kentucky and asking
smiths. We are very proud of t hem, presence at the
and are glad outsiders see ttie reason.
for the purpose of
Mr. Henry Mitchell, Sr.. who has
more effective organization, a uniting
been confined to his home a'l winter
with rheumatism is able to be out of forces for the benefit of the school
and the teacher as well.
WE WANT YOUR PATRONAGE and have the GOODS and
PRICES that WILL GET IT
HALL SEED CO.
BOTH PHONES 1454.